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Amélie Daoust-Boisvert August 6 2012
PHOTO CAPTION: Hundreds of teachers have denounced Law 12, formerly known as Bill 78, at a press conference at UQAM, August 6, 2012.
Teachers and CEGEPs and universities will respect the democratic decisions of student associations, rather than follow law 12 (formerly known as bill 78). Hundreds of teachers spoke out today [August 6, 2012] against the emergency legislation at a press conference at l’Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM).
The teachers published a manifesto signed by 1162 Quebecois teachers, joined by hundreds of colleagues around the world, for a total of about 2000 signatures.
“We reject the idea that respecting the contract between an academic institution and a student legitimizes the violence exercised by the state against collective political rights - rights to associate, to express one’s opinion freely, to make collective decisions, to strike, and to demonstrate,” they wrote.
Given that many student associations have yet to decide this week whether to continue the strike, philosophy professor Michel Seymour believes, “we must not pretend there has been no conflict, but we must above all showcase how the premier is manipulative” for calling an election in the midst of a crisis. ”It’s playing the government’s game to return to classes,” he added.
If students democratically decide to return to their desks, mathematics teacher Paul Dumais of Collège de Rosemont, says that teachers will give “the best classes possible,” since they are there to support the students’ decisions. ”We will act in accordance with our principles and our values, because it is valuable to disobey an unjust law,” adds his colleague Mathieu Teasdale of CEGEP Saint-Laurent.
[Translator’s note: the original article contains a link to the French manifesto being read aloud at the press conference by Paul Dumais. The manifesto can be found in English at https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B3lTHAjqihRqcjByeG51Zi1Qcms/edit. For more information about signing this document, please see http://profscontrelahausse.org/petitions-et-lettres-ouvertes/petition-pour-la-defense-de-la-democratie-et-du-doit-de-protestation-des-etudiant-es/.]
Translated from the original French by Translating the printemps érable.
*Translating the printemps érable is a volunteer collective attempting to balance the English media’s extremely poor coverage of the student conflict in Québec by translating media that has been published in French into English. These are amateur translations; we have done our best to translate these pieces fairly and coherently, but the final texts may still leave something to be desired. If you find any important errors in any of these texts, we would be very grateful if you would share them with us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please read and distribute these texts in the spirit in which they were intended; that of solidarity and the sharing of information.